Lead Levels in the District are Historically Low

Water is essentially lead-free when it leaves the treatment plant, but lead can be released when the water comes in contact with pipes, plumbing, and fixtures that contain lead. Lead sources and lead levels vary between buildings, so it is important to identify and remove lead sources in every household. Customers may request a free lead test kit once per year from the Drinking Water Division at 202-612-3440 or by email at leadtest@dcwater.com. Please review our lead section for detailed information about lead in the District and how to minimize lead exposure.

Corrosion control measures have successfully reduced lead levels in the District’s water. The graphs below show lead and copper concentrations measured by DC Water from 2013 to 2019. The EPA limits for lead and copper are based on the 90th percentile of all samples collected during a sampling period. This means that at least 90 percent of over 100 homes sampled in each 6-month monitoring period must be below the action levels set by EPA. Lead and copper testing is conducted in a subset of District homes to assess the overall corrosion control treatment.